Selling just shy of 2,500 units in March, the Buick Verano is off to a good start in the U.S. But what some may not be aware of is the fact that the Verano’s twin in China — the Buick Excelle GT — has a sporty version that’s not available in the U.S. of A.
For starters, the Excelle GT 1.6 sport edition (yes, that’s the official name) cradles a 1.6 liter turbo-charged Ecotec engine good for 135 Kw (181 horses) and 235 Nm (173 lb.-ft.) of torque. These numbers are almost identical to the base naturally-aspirated 2.4 liter Ecotec found in the North American-market Verano, but the 1.6T obviously behaves differently thanks to a different power band of the turbocharged mill.
The changes to the Excelle sport edition don’t end with the engine, however, as the Excelle features the FlexRide system that allows the driver to recalibrate the driving mode of the car with the push of a button — think Buick Regal’s Interactive Drive Control. Entering Sport Mode, for instance, adjusts the gas pedal for a more linear feel and changes the damper settings — all in real time — to stiffen the suspension. Touring mode relaxes the car’s suspenders to make for a more relaxed ride. The Excelle also has Xenon HID headlamps with dynamic level height adjustment and a headlamp cleaner. Interesting that Buick decided to exclude both of these features from the U.S.-market Verano.
Rounding out the additions to the 1.6T are a rear spoiler, aluminum pedals, and red with black fabric wrapping the bolstered sport seats. The Excelle GT retails from 132,000 RMB, or $20,912 at current conversion rates.
Knowing this is possible with the Verano/Excelle Delta II platform, do you think the Buick Verano sold in North America can benefit from such a package/trim? Talk to us in the comments!